Jim Pace, who headed the Chattanooga Motor Car Festival along with Byron DeFoor, has died at 59 of COVID-19.
Mr. DeFoor said, “We are saddened and heartbroken by the untimely loss of Jim Pace to COVID-19. Jim was my dear friend and racing partner with the Fifty Plus Racing Foundation that helped to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for Alzheimer’s research. Jim was the president and chief operating officer of our most recent fundraising event, the Chattanooga Motorcar Festival.
Not only was he an outstanding race car driver, he was one of the nicest, most gracious gentlemen in the sport and car collector world.
“As one of the organizers of the Festival, he was a prominent member of our team. His expertise and knowledge were invaluable in the creation of the Festival, and he will be missed.
“This is a terrible disease that should be taken seriously. Jim was a strong, vibrant and healthy man.
“Our hearts go out to his family and to his longtime partner and love of his life, Celeste LaChapelle.”
Mr. Pace died Friday.
At one time in his young life, Mr. Pace had decided to become a doctor. He majored in pre-med at Mississippi State, then entered the University of Mississippi Medical School in 1983. After three years and three days into medical school, he decided that racing cars would be his life and career.